• 70°

Membership matters for Franklin County clubs

It is almost that time of the year when clubs restart their activities, following a summer break. 

One of the first activities is membership recruitment. Clubs might host a membership tea, conduct a membership drive or mail invitations to prospective members, inviting them to join.

Some clubs have closed membership, which means only a limited number are allowed to join.  These clubs – such as Book Lovers Study Club and Cultura Garden Club – meet in the members’ homes, which limits the size of the club’s membership.  

Other organizations, such as Franklin County Education Retiree Association, have an open membership, which allows as many qualified members – such as retired education retirees – to join as wish to do so. Their meetings are generally held in larger venues, such as churches, country clubs, hotel banquet rooms, community and civic centers. 

For some clubs, recruiting new members is essential. “Unless we get new blood in our clubs, we are going to disband,” one president stated. 

Clubs are focusing on recruiting younger members. Growth is vital to the continued success of any club, and this concept needs to be shared by everyone in the organization. Growth produces new talent, brainpower and manpower. It propels the club to greater involvement and more meaningful community service, and it boosts the club’s ability to raise funds for charities and service projects. 

All club members, both new and seasoned, should know exactly how they fit into the club’s structure. All members are important and should be a part of committees and projects. 

The viability of your club depends on the participation of every member, and new members should be involved from the day they join.

Always keep meetings and projects fun and stimulating. People join a club because they think it will add value to their lives. 

All members should be positive and welcoming and willing to share their club knowledge and personal expertise, while also being open to new ideas and opportunities presented by the newcomers.

Clubs should be forward-thinking. What worked 10 years ago, or even three years ago, might not succeed now. 

Overcome the fear of trying new things; learn as much from what does not work as from what does work. Embrace new ideas and new members!

By Susie Malone